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Mass tort litigation is for when many people that have been injured by one product, in this case, Taxotere, have their claims consolidated. The consolidated Taxotere claim is bought before one federal court judge so that he or she can make consistent pre-trial rulings, discovery issues can be resolved, and there is more control, organization, and efficiency with the hundreds or thousands of individual cases that exist.

Claim Trial Process

Taxotere mass tort claims are handled by filing them in one common venue. A group of lawyers tends to head up the litigation for all of the cases that are filed. For example, if there are a thousand cases filed, only twenty may be selected for the trial. Those cases will move forward and while they may not set a legal precedent, if the plaintiff is successful, it may advise the defendant of their likelihood of success with the remaining cases. These cases are referred to as bellwether trials. That can put pressure on the company to resolve the cases and to reach some resolution with everyone that may have a Taxotere case.

What to Expect

Since mass tort litigation has many individual plaintiffs, it takes a longer period of time for there to be significant movement of the case through court. The bellwether trials will have an impact on a client’s case, even though it will likely be indirect. Unfortunately, it is usually a long and difficult road, but it is judicially-efficient and advantageous to pool resources in mass tort litigation.

Important Qualities of an Attorney

An individual wants someone that is involved and knowledgeable about the Taxotere mass tort litigation generally. It is also important that the firm involved have experience and education in mass tort litigation and has the resources to handle that type of case. It is beneficial to the client if they can work with someone locally in their case and is available to speak with them to provide updates on the case as it progresses.

Class Action vs. Mass Tort

A class action involves people who are similarly situated and suffer a common injury. With a class action, there may be a thousand class members, but one lawsuit is filed naming one member of the class as the representative. That person can make decisions that will bind the rest of the group.

With a mass tort, there may be a thousand people that have been injured by a product and their cases are filed individually in the names of each individual plaintiff. Each individual plaintiff maintains control over his or her case, makes their own settlement decisions, and is not bound by the decisions of a representative.


Mass tort litigation is complex. The plaintiff is dealing with multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical companies with legal teams that seem endless. That alone can be complex. Another complexity with mass tort litigation is that there are multiple plaintiffs from different states, which have different discovery rules, different rules of civil procedure, and different statutes of limitations. These state-specific analyses can become important in building all of those cases.